Le Loop 2018 - Stage 19:Lourdes to Col du Soulour via Col d’Aubisque

The road to Laruns is closed due to the major rain and flooding about three weeks ago; and whilst ASO have their fingers crossed it doesn’t help us; so the decision was taken to run the stage this way.

I was then going to say it didn’t matter anyway as the weather today was such that no-one saw anything! But that wasn’t quite true- I will return to the Cold’Aubisque.... as I made my ascent there was a two/three minute window when in the pouring rain the mist cleared and the rock face, the sheer drop and the green pastures rolling into the distance were stunning: a fitting tribute to what many are regarding as the final act of our Le Loop Tour; yes we have a TTstage and the roll into Paris but they have in part become footnotes to today.

In 2015 I ascended the Aspin and the Tourmalet; dry and cloudy I saw little that day; today even less and at the top of the Tourmalet I quickly added my winter clothing to that which I had......

Col des Bordères at c6% felt as far from that as one could imagine but any climb with flat/ downhill has the potential to challenge.....anyway a massive sense of achievement as I reached the Aubisque.

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